Bunches of Banana Republicans

The number of "invitation-only conservative gatherings" on Capitol Hill is increasing. The Conservative Working Group, Values Action Team, Fiscal Action Team, and others, through regular meetings, were "instrumental in defeating the Law of the Sea Treaty" and "a driving force behind the failure of the Senate to renew the assault-weapons ban." They helped "force the resignation two weeks ago of a spokeswoman conducting an inquiry into the United Nations' oil-for-food program," after the Heritage Foundation "complained that she wrote an op-ed two years ago that was critical of President Bush." A Boston Globe special report found (as did Banana Republicans), "With one party controlling the White House and both chambers of Congress ... the way laws are made in America" is changing, to favor "secrecy and speed over open debate and negotiation."